The inclusion of international students in net migration targets in the UK had been heavily criticised by sector stakeholders under Theresa May’s administration. Calls to exclude students from any net migration reduction targets extend back more than a decade.
Chief executive of UUK, Vivienne Stern, said that any cut to international student numbers “would run directly counter to the government’s strategy to rebuild the economy”, as research shows they make a net positive contribution of at least £26 billion per year to the UK.
“Limiting international students would be an act of economic self-harm that would damage many parts of the country the government aims to make more prosperous,” she said.
“We need a long-term, stable policy approach in international visas”
“We should be proud that UK universities are held in such high esteem around the world that we are one of the most popular places to study. Instead of doing down a great strength of the UK, government should support it. We need a long-term, stable policy approach in international visas, which is tough on abuse but supports long-term, managed growth.”